HomeTelevisionI'm Larry Young and I Consume and Contextualize Things

I’m Larry Young and I Consume and Contextualize Things

It’s no secret I love Ortegas on Strange New Worlds; I write that almost every time I do a column on the show and nearly every time it comes up on an episode; yesterday’s Serious Star Trek blogcast featured me saying once again I love her because she’s the only one without some narrative-crippling backstory or deeply personal disappointments or space PTSD or whatever. Ortegas is the only one who seems like she’s in Starfleet because she’s happy to be there. I mean, of course they won’t be able to stop themselves from giving her some crippling backstory or deeply personal disappointments or space PTSD or whatever but I really hope they don’t because as awesome a manly-man Pike is and as dreamy as Nurse Chapel is and as no-nonsense as Dr. M’Benga is, Ortegas is 100% my audience-in.

In the middle of all the nonsense in the world, Star Trek has always been my comfort food. I’m happy to be there watching if the characters look like (despite the conflict or monster or existential threat that week) they want to be there. Heady science fiction concepts to consider and distract; two-fisted scuffles solve philosophical misunderstandings, core themes of humanity presented by talking rocks and Space Abraham Lincoln. Risk is our business; that’s why we’re aboard her. Always an eye on why, even if the crew might have been unsure here and there on the what. But always “out there; thataway” and on to the next thing because that’s how we learn and grow.

But how do we learn and grow if we can’t have our memories? Finally the newest iteration of the Kurtzman Star Trek has admitted it’s a third ST timeline, and is doing some full-on science fiction, which is all we’ve ever wanted. Leaving the cosmic sun lamp on too long and you can’t recall anything overtly, but if you’re a bad enough ass like Erica Ortegas, that kind of doesn’t matter, because you’re a collection of your hopes and dreams and skills and talent and experience and I am one with the Force and the Force is with me and how cool was that that the thing that saved them all was the only one who looks like she wants to be there on a regular day turned out she was the only one who wanted to be there when the ship needed saving.

I’m just happy that Star Trek is finally being Star Trek again with some bananas science fiction and leaning into the skid.

Larry Young
Larry Young
Larry Young is a writer: non-fiction, graphic novels, and pop culture criticism. His work has appeared in ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY, VARIETY, and THE YEAR’S BEST SCIENCE FICTION. A frequent guest on the video podcasts MILLION DOLLAR MAILBOX and WORD BALLOONS, he’s also co-host of SERIOUS STAR TREK and the sister YouTube channel of this website.


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